Urban Planning and Green Building

In 2012 Green building was attended by 24,660 people and 906 exhibitors. Could this be so important? From 2002, Green building is the world's largest conference and expo, which was dedicated to the green building, thus it must be very important. Sparked by the great current phenomena of climate change, the world has a solution to curb this catastrophe. Climate change has brought about world researchers, academician, innovators, policy makers and government to the round tables in search for the solution. This has been evident in several global conventions and conferences happening worldwide. Climate change affects all sectors of any given economy to which urban planning is a part. One of the deliberations floated up is the Green Building. This is a brilliant idea for urban planner to implement in the urban areas the embedding creativity innovation and “going green” concept in the urban building.

What is Green Building?

Green building is the procedure of using environmentally friendly means and refining in more optimal terms the efficient use of resources to accomplish economic, energy and water-usage efficacy, while holding the land healthy, high water and air quality throughout the whole life cycle of the building. The infancy of this great idea was in the 1970s instigated by the growing environmental movement and the high cost of fuel at that time. Greening the White House followed soon after in 1996 under the leadership of Bill Clinton. The greening of the White House program was designed to improve energy efficiency and environmental performance of the White House complex. This was done to reduce waste, lower energy use, utilize renewable resources and ultimately improve indoor air quality and building comfort. This concept has not changed and currently is rather more exalted and modified for perfection.

Why Green Building?

The same reasons the government uses to practice what it preachers, regarding the utmost level of its administration, hence the reason that urban planning should adapt this green technology. Unlike 10 year ago, today urban center faces a whole new phenomenon of crisis, ranging from population pressure to the traffic congestion, indoor and outdoor pollution, and inadequate energy supply and many others. Green building on the other hand is a quick solution to most of the mentioned issues. Current developments in the urban planning sector are carried out with creativity and innovativeness to counter the existing economic, social and environmental problems. Green building area is sufficient and self-sustaining in terms of energy efficiency, since they are developed to use the renewable energy like the sun. Glass walls technique is currently common in green building, where sunlight is the main source of lighting and less of grid-sourced power. Air conditioning of a green building is done through well-designed roof ventilators and underground air-cooling chambers used to regulate indoor air temperature. They run through the underground and allow the cool draft flow continuously into the building without using, electricity. Green building has a low chance of fire out breaks due to the limited use if explosives fuel or fault electrical lines. Biogas is one of the safest gases that can be connected in green building and used for cooking and lighting; and it is generated from biodegradable waste. Green building is adopted at a domestic and commercial levels of constructions, hence it can be easily adopted by urban planners from any region With the overwhelming success of the Greening of the White House program, other governmental institutions have been given a green makeover since. The Pentagon, the Presidio, and the U.S. Department of Energy among others have gone green.

What are the Existing Institutions and Policies on Green Building?

The United States Green Build Council (USGBC) and Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) are some of the institutions developed to promote, designs and construction of the buildings that are environmentally friendly, profitable and safe for working and living.

Is Green Building a Solution?

Green building is already up and running and it has been proved as effective. In order to achieve our common future sustainably, as suggested in the Brundtland Report of 1987, urban planning will still need to upscale its developmental impacts  by adopting a compulsory measure for all the upcoming building on the US soils.

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